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November 2010 - 2nd half
HEAD LICE - don't let it get you down
HEALTH, November 2010, by Jenifer Merifield
Don’t Let It Get You Down
Most of us don’t like bugs creepy-crawling on us, let alone taking up residence on our heads! So what do you do when lice moves in to your hairdo?
Meet Dawn Mucci. I guess you could call her a sort of lice-ologist! She knows all about it, like how it spreads, how to get rid of it without chemicals, and why you should NOT feel ashamed about getting it. Dawn had lice more than once as a kid (so she totally gets how traumatic it can be!), and now as an adult she has started a successful company called ‘The Lice Squad’ to educate others and help stop the little critters in their tracks!
Here is Dawn’s story and her sage ‘Lice Advice’…
“When I was a child I had long beautiful hair that for some reason always attracted head lice. I recall always being the child who got sent home every time the nurses came to check for lice at my school. I was traumatized by it each time. The teasing, the shame and the repeated exposure to pesticides that I received. My hair was long and thick and the comb my parents used to try and remove the lice eggs tore it out and made me cry. My eyes would water from the smell of the pesticide that was poured on my head more times than I can remember. It was a nightmare and I hated every bit of it!
“Having head lice has nothing to do with cleanliness, status, age, or race. It’s a common human condition that mostly affects children, mainly girls with clean, long, thick hair. Mothers, brothers, fathers, and grandparents may also be affected by head lice but for the most part they are seen more often in girls ages 2 to 18. It is my mission to dispel the stigma associated with head lice and to stop the over-use and abuse of pesticides on children and our planet. No other girl should feel the way that I did when I got lice and there are more natural ways of treating it than the ‘pesticide and shame’ combo.”
Dawn’s Top 3 Ways To Detect Head Lice
1. If your head is itchy more than usual, this may be a sign of Lice.
2. Try combing your hair with a quality head lice comb through the hot spots of your head (around the ears, nape of the neck and crown) to see if brownish spots appear when you wipe it on a white paper towel or tissue. If so, those spots may be lice eggs or bugs.
3. Even if you’re not itchy, have someone check your head if you suspect lice or know it’s going around in your class or circle of friends.
Dawn’s Top 4 Ways to Treat Head Lice
Should you find lice, keep in mind that getting rid of it (eradication) is a process of diminishing it bit by bit (reduction). You can choose a number of topical treatments but you must focus most of your efforts on removing and killing the lice eggs! Getting a pesticide-free (non-chemical) product in combination with an effective nit removal tool (lice comb) is the first step. There are new treatments that use heated air, enzymes and manual reduction combing that will make the process of lice removal fast and easy. There are also professional services available to help you, like what we do at ‘The Lice Squad’.
1. Don’t panic but act quickly! Get your hands on a good lice comb and some natural treatments. You will be at your ‘nits’ end if you don’t have the proper tools and treatments to combat the enemy. Lice Squad Canada can direct you to many options that will help you win the war against head lice.
2. Begin treating and combing! I recommend that you treat every 4th to 5th day with a pesticide-free solution and that you comb every second day for two weeks. If you are thorough on your first comb through you can eliminate most of the infestation. However, you need to do a two week follow up to interrupt the life cycle of the head louse and to prevent being re-infested.
3. Report it! Don’t let the STIGMA (embarrassment or shame) associated with head lice stop you from telling anyone that you have it. If you don’t tell you stand a good chance of getting it back from its original source. Imagine, someone gives it to you, you give it to someone else, and so on and so on. It’s the stigma associated with head lice that keeps the problem going. The right thing to do is not let it keep you from doing what is right and necessary to stop the spread.
4. Follow up! Even after you do your two week course of treatment it is a good idea to ‘Take a Peak Once a Week’. If you catch a lice infestation early you will have more luck getting rid of it before it becomes too overwhelming.
A Happy Ending for Dawn... and for LICE
“I turned my own traumatic experience of having lice as a young girl and teen into an opportunity to help others. Life is funny that way. Sometimes, difficult situations that seem overwhelming at the time become lessons and opportunities later. I am thankful for what I went through because I can now be of service to others because of it.”
How awesome is that?! Go see Dawn’s website to learn more about lice or get advice from her. She’s super nice and always happy to help.
~ Jenifer Merifield
PARTNER - The Lice Squad
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